IWKC - Evil Bear Boris

(CD, 2015, 41:37, Long Arms Records, CDLA15093)

The tracks:
  1- Point Of No Return(23:07)
  2- Alles Unter Kontrolle(6:42)
  3- Ned Hoper(3:51)
  4- Keine Rationale Erklärung(1:50)
  5- The Music Will Play In Your House But
       You Don't Hear It

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The name of Russian band IWKC is an abbreviation of the words I Will Kill Chita, a joke that refers to the tensions the band members had in the past. There are ten different musicians contributing on this album (most of them playing classical instruments like cello and violin or jazz instruments like saxophone), plus the Gnesin State Musical College Choir. The band itself describes their music as a combination of art rock, neo-psychedelica, post rock and neo-classic ... which makes me very curious. I just love the sleeve of the album. It's a very very artistic painting of a furious bear. The inside of the album sleeve contains a letter written by Russian composer/musician Vladimir Martynov, it's written in English and in Russian (and I have to admit, my English is better than my Russian). Vladimir gives a brief opinion about the album, which makes me even more curious.

The first track of the album, Point Of No Return, is with 23 minutes also the longest track on the album. The intro contains a very cool bass riff (the bass is very present in the music) and some weird rhythm delays. The drums are very jazz-like, while the rest of the music leans towards classical music. After six and a half minutes the music gets more and more intense. There's a lot happening during this track, there's never a dull moment. The music gets weirder and spookier/haunting after 15 minutes. Some members get their solo moments with their instruments too. This track would be very suitable as background music for a movie. Alles Unter Kontrolle is the second longest track, but nowhere near as long as the first one. It starts slightly haunting but turns into a very lovely track. After three minutes the track gets a bit more up tempo and a more positive twist. Ned Hoper is my favourite track of the album. It starts with a catchy bass and strings. The keyboard solo that occupies a large part of the song is great. Keine Rationale Erklärung is the shortest track on the album. The whole track contains an improvisational saxophone solo. The Music Will Play In Your House But You Don't Hear It (kudos for the long song title) starts with a very distorted bass riff, followed by incoherent playing by the rest of the band. Later on in the track there's a small 'battle' between the bass and the drums. Later on the track leans more on the wind instruments.

The band really makes the instrumental music they promised in their description. It is refreshing, surprising and enjoyable to listen to... And it sounds very good as well. If you like bands that play both accessible and experimental music, then this album should be in your collection.

***** Iris Hidding (edited by Astrid de Ronde)

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